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Monday, January 03, 2011

Dave Attwood facing a lengthy ban after stamp on Petrisor Toderasc

Dave Attwood facing a lengthy ban after stamp on Petrisor Toderasc

Gloucester lock Dave Attwood will find out the severity of his suspension later this week following his stamp to the face of La Rochelle prop Petrisor Toderasc during their Amlin Challenge cup defeat at Kingsholm last month.

Toderasc, a Romanian front rower, was left badly injured from the incident with initial fears being that he would lose his eyesight. He was admitted to hospital which revealed that his vision had in fact not been affected, and his cheekbone wasnt broken, as had been suspected initially.

He did however get a large scar on his cheek, two broken teeth (which required emergency dental work), and possible tear duct damage in the eye that was struck by Attwoods boot. La Rochelle did advise him not to take legal action though, but they were furious nonetheless.

"We are not happy with any incident like that. It was a reprehensible act an unsporting act. It is dangerous to play like that and there cannot be a place for it on the field. An act like that can have serious consequences, so we have made a declaration to the ERC and provided pictures. Now it is a matter for them," said their president, Vincent Merling.

"Some of his teeth are smashed. Its very serious," he added.

The 23 year old will face a disciplinary hearing in Dublin on Thursday this week, which could result in him being ruled out of the England contention for the upcoming Six Nations. While Gloucester itself has suspended him for two weeks, the sanction for stamping ranges from two weeks to a year.

Its not the first time Attwood has been involved in this type of incident. In Australia he got off on a technicality after two incidents during Englands match against the Australian Barbarians were dismissed after a procedural issue.

Attwood spoke recently about his concerns over the controversial incidents.

"The matter never went to trial so I was never found guilty, yet the fact that I got off on a technicality has meant that people think I was guilty of the offence. People will think, 'Ah, hes a piece of work. Hes a bit nasty'.

"I dont want that reputation. Im certainly physical, but Im not a nasty player at all," he added.

UPDATE 06/01/2010:
Attwood has been suspended for nine weeks, ruling him out of some of the Six Nations.

Time: 01:20

Posted at 1:32 pm | 54 comments

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 54 comments

Anonymous January 03, 2011 2:25 pm

Noice!!

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Alexander Ioannou January 03, 2011 2:35 pm

Not "Noice" at all.

Stupid, selfish and idiotic. I think a minimum of 3 month ban will be administered and I cant really blame the ERC if they do.

However much it may have been un-intentional it was dangerous and wreckless.

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Pedro January 03, 2011 2:37 pm

but Im not a nasty player at all
F... U

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 2:53 pm

In before French people complain...

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 2:57 pm

He's not french nore south african so no problem, he'll get the minimum. Unfortunately for him he's not a kiwi either, cause otherwise he would have been discharged.

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KG January 03, 2011 3:04 pm

Personally, I think this player should get a pretty lengthy ban, up there with Attoub and Depuis. However, I don't think it will.


It is quite apparent that Depuis and Attoub sought to deliberately harm an opponent. Depuis checked if the referee was checking before taking a second shot at Ferris' eyes and Attoub reached quite a distance and placed two fingers right in Ferris' eye. There's no way those actions could be defended at a disciplinary hearing.

Attwood raised a foot with his back turned and he could not be 100% sure that the players face was right behind his feet (although, taking the tackle position into account, he probably knew where the opponents head was, but this cannot be proven for certain judging by the video). I do think that Attwood meant to kick a player, but not necessarily in the head although he was likely aware that this would probably happen. It is much harder to prove that Attwood meant to kick the tackler in the face and I'm guessing that the citing panel will judge his actions as beyond reckless but not malicious.


I'm just trying to see how the case would be looked at from a technical point of view. So before some French fans jump on my back, I'm not trying to defend him at all. I would still ban Attwood for around the same length as Depuis if it was up to me.

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Flipje January 03, 2011 3:25 pm

KG, as a French (okay not living for the past 13 years in my country), I can understand and even support most of your explanation.

Nevertheless drawing the line between a reckless or malicous challenge is pretty hard for me on this action. I believe Attwood knew pretty well what he was doing and where his foot was landing. I guess he got upset still being hold while the game was on going.

I do not like comparing incident (Dupuis/Attoub or else), I just hope the citing panel will punished the gravity of the incident based on the evidence given. As for myself, I believe it is a pretty serious incident which could have been much uglier that it finally is.

No scream for blood or revenge, just an appropriate ban.

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KG January 03, 2011 3:48 pm

I agree with you. I think he knew what he was doing.

I compared the three incidents because in my opinion what Attwood did was comparable (in terms of maliciousness) to what Depuis and Attoub did, but it is not so easy to show it in front of a citing panel. Also, on other sites I read a number of people, particularly French fans, were quite quick to compare the three incidents and call for a long ban.

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Colombes January 03, 2011 4:17 pm

i'll speak as french but also with impartiality it's important here to be fair and square.

Dupuy and Attoub acts were nasty and coward. They take deserved bans, maybe too much for attoub who nearly thought to stop his career.

A lot of french fans will say that Attwood deserved a huge ban and i can understand them.

The 1st fact is that Attwood seemed to stamp intentionally on toderasc. Despite he was aiming his head or not, the act is dangerous. should i recall that Quinnell lost his eye in a similar action?

http://www.southwalesargus.co.uk/news/gwentnews/8684566.Player_arrested_over_Quinnell_eye_injury/

The 2nd fact is that Attwood is a recidivist with stamping and kicking in mauls, and he was never sacntionned on both cases

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xliCKZn9Wmg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txXYmIXLD8E

So before, my beloved french fans are yelling. Just wait for ERC answer and then everyone will have his opinion.
It's sad to see rugby fans arguing for long bans, but i think Attwood case will show if the maxim "the law is the same for everybody" is true or not

i personnaly think that he won't take a ban more than 3 months...

View Videos

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 4:20 pm

I would say reckless with very serious consequences but the intention is hard to figure out as others have already said.

However... when will the holding players off the ball get sorted???!!! There isn't a lot that the held player can do legally. I am not saying any injury is deserved at all. There is so much holding off the ball in the game and no-one seems that upset... strange

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 5:07 pm

Being clung onto when play has moved forward is very frustrating, from a player's point of view, but that does not make such actions right. The player was on the ground and a raised boot and the following stamp is indefensible.

The difficulty with this is that due to the fact that Attwood had his back turned at the time it cannot be said whether it was entirely intentional.

The extent of damage incurred was terrible. Two broken teeth is not a laughing matter. It is not by any means permanent disfigurement but will affect the player's life from now on. He probably used to enjoy eating apples!

The question is does the extent of damage warrant a longer punishment?

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Mike January 03, 2011 5:34 pm

That is as bad as gouging. He should get a long ban for that - 6 months perhaps? You can't risk the sight or the face of another player.

I don't know what the standard sanction for that type of thing is - the only thing you could say in his defence is that he didn't follow through and drive the guy's head into the ground, but if he did he'd probably be looking at a murder charge, not a citing.

I hope Tonderasc recovers from this - I'd certainly understand if he took legal action.

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 6:05 pm

Attwood played for my club team, though im abit younger and we DO play rough rugby.
though knowing attwood he wouldnt do this on puprose, its a natural reaction, if a player holds you back from behind, you swing your arm back, if a players holding you from the floor you try and shrug them off. yes, he deserves a ban for around 2-3 months but i dont think this was intended to do the damage it did. to the people who said above that he meant to do it, well you are just fools. he wasnt even faceing towards the player on the floor, so you might aswell pipe down.

a ban is deserved, but lets not blow it out of preportion.

p.s SHOULD OF WORE A GUSHIELD.

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Maui January 03, 2011 6:13 pm

If a player has you by the shins and his head is not in front of your legs, there's only one place his legs can be... directly behind your feet / calf area. there isn't much debating about if he wanted to kick the player in the head, the only things to argue are how much damage he meant to cause and if it was a reflex action, neither of which cannot be known by anyone other than Attwood. I'm guessing it was a bit of both

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 6:35 pm

6 months minimum, i wouldnt complain over a year ban though, intentional or not its bloody dangerous

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Piggles January 03, 2011 6:38 pm

As an England supporter I was hoping he would get some gametime in the 6n. Unfortunately on the evidence of the vid it is clear he should sit out a lengthy ban. I think 3-4 months is appropriate

There is mitigation- he was being held, and he didnt see where he was kicking, thats why I am not calling for 6months or a year. But players are responsible when they lash out and this should be recognized in the ban.

I also agree with commentors mentioning the holding etc, this needs to be erased from the game but it is not Attwoods responsibility, refs need to start penalising it.

I hope he does get a ban and learns from it. Locks need to be hard and aggressive but the likes of Grewcock and Botha stray too often into the thuggish and are therefore liabilities to their team at times. Attwood should not aspire to replicate that aspect of their game.

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 6:58 pm

It's very frustrating for a hooker when the opposition 9 feeds the ball a metre behind the centre of the scrum. Just as illegal as holding on, also not sorted out by ref. Would the hooker then be able to use this as mitigation if he then kicked the 9 in the head after the play had moved on? Thought not....

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 7:03 pm

'It's very frustrating for a hooker when the opposition 9 feeds the ball a metre behind the centre of the scrum. Just as illegal as holding on, also not sorted out by ref. Would the hooker then be able to use this as mitigation if he then kicked the 9 in the head after the play had moved on? Thought not....'

different kettle of fish so you might aswell shutup. every team does it.

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 7:07 pm

Why is it a different kettle of fish? Same thing - illegal play. The 2every team" defense doesn't cut it either fuckwit, as evry other team also holds on to layers.

Actualay, why am I wasting my time arguing with an obvious arsehole

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 7:08 pm

For those using the "he didn't know he was kicking hi face defense" - look again at the video. He kicks back behind his standing leg. The natural thing would be to kick straight back. Why kick behind your own ankle - because he was aiming for his head

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 7:22 pm

Think he deserves a long ban, if you kick out like that when someone is on the floor, then there is a chance you will hit his head.

However, like others have said it highlights the holding players off the ball, which someone will argue is just part of the game. But its got worse at all levels, and now is cynical. Slowing players down or taking them out of the game. The RFU should have got hold of this ages ago, it will be a lot hard to start pulling players up on it now.

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 7:35 pm

'Why is it a different kettle of fish? Same thing - illegal play. The 2every team" defense doesn't cut it either fuckwit, as evry other team also holds on to layers.

Actualay, why am I wasting my time arguing with an obvious arsehole;

get to bed, school tomorrow! pay attention in that english lesson too...

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Flipje January 03, 2011 7:57 pm

KG,
I agree with you about the "moaning" of quite some French fans on some website. But moaning is the new fashion in the Top 14 (with the best example given & enhanced by both rugby president from USAP & ASM reaching the level of the best football trash talk - following a "nice" Cudmore incident).

Some of you bring the issue /impact of small annoying infrangement (off the ball or simply killing the ball), I agree this a pb that would never be solved specially since this game moved professional. 20/30 years ago, rucking and self disciplined "adjustment" in the scrummage was quite helping to avoid this but led also to some extreme situation.

About the Attwood incident, the ban should let him out of the 6 nations and back in contention for a WC place in the English squad.

On a separate matter, nice to have a constructive chat on this topic.

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 8:43 pm

its quite similar to paul o'connell lashing out at a player the other week in the heineken cup, although obviously, that wasnt a boot to someones face! so in theory he should get a much longer suspension. but this whole stopping other players off the ball must stop as its bad for the game! feel for the guy but cant help but feel that if he was wearing a gumshield his teeth may not have come off quite as bad as they did!

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Mike January 03, 2011 9:05 pm

Do we know that he wasn't wearing a gum-shield? Or is that a myth that we are starting here that we will hear forever afterwards? (like the myth about Attoub being banned with one 'fake' photograph)

It's a pity that Attwood wasn't properly dealt with for the incidents in Australia - he can now claim with some justification that he has a totally clean record before this.

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 9:36 pm

26th?

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 10:52 pm

mike, would his teeth of cane out if he was? if he was wearing a gumshield and they came out them he wouldv realised a while after it came out. didnt see no gumsheild in his mouth in that game.(take a closer look if you have it recorded)

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Anonymous January 03, 2011 10:55 pm

oh and just to add. didnt see the physio take a gumshield out when he was on the floor.

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Wikileakage January 04, 2011 12:32 am

Needs a lengthy ban. At least 6 months.

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Mr.D January 04, 2011 9:59 am

It's Toderasc not "Tonderasc" :\

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Anonymous January 04, 2011 11:28 am

Yes its a 'bann' but saying this was in the league of atoub is ridiculous. There was no intention to strike the player in the face, the player was holding on to him on the ground, id stamp behind me as most rugby players would to break free. No bad meant there.

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Anonymous January 04, 2011 1:35 pm

if this isn't reason enough for everyone to wear a gumshield i don't know what is

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StopThisThuggery January 04, 2011 1:54 pm

Ban him for at least 6 months!! I agree he would not have known for sure where the tackler's face would be since his back is facing the tackler and is on the ground. But it was a delibrate attempt to stamp.. Check the "egg shellskull rule" in law.
It was unfortunate he struck the face but it is the responsibility on Dave Attwood not to strike out and it is his responsbility that the injury is so severe.
Players have lost their eyesight due to such idiots on the field already. Do we really need more incidents before the penalty is made harsher. We play sports because we enjoy it and I think even professional sportsmen do not expect to be disabled while doing something they love. I

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TB January 04, 2011 2:57 pm

You guys are crazy. It was an accident. Stomping on heads or testes is never right but holding on to a players legs when the ball is away is cheating.

The way bans are going with you cowards calling for 6 months or year bans really gives players an incentive to cheat. I mean provoking other players.

Unless somebody attacks a ref, uses a foreign object or gets busted with steroids a 6 month ban is ridiculous and draconian, and not in the limits of rugby or sport.

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Anonymous January 04, 2011 3:08 pm

When you hold on to someone legs and get kicked and lose your eyesight, we'll see who is crazy and a coward

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Anonymous January 04, 2011 4:47 pm

to TB,

you're ignorant or simply biased.
The way attwood had stamped is clearly intentional. whatever he was aiming the head or not, whatever the prop was holdin him for few more seconds... stamping become dangerous.
Ask to G.Quinnell his feelings after losing an eye after the same type of action.

we are ok to say that provocations are a plague for the game, but the bad reactions are not acts of justice.

Remember Dupuy's sanction. He was illegally grabbed by Ferris in a maul and he reacted like a coward, eye-gougin him. It was deserved.

IRB have said last year that they wanted to eradicate actions who could seriously injuried players (eye-gougin and kickin are part of it)

Let see what will do ERC, but i'm pretty sure that they will judge it like a simple accident and fall over the shoulders of the next player who will do that. i beg u it will be "unrespectable" person such like a french, a kiwi or an islander

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Anonymous January 04, 2011 4:54 pm

Good Lord, he is safe.!!! He is not French or Canadian !!! 1 week max in July or august !!!

Ok Ok don t get nasty, just a joke !!!
8-)

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Anonymous January 04, 2011 7:10 pm

the game was better in the old days where you could dance on peoples heads for holding on to you.

pity this new game...

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Loco January 04, 2011 10:40 pm

^^^

You've never played rugby have you anon. And I bet you don't have children playing rugby either.

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Anonymous January 05, 2011 4:29 pm

He should get a long ban! Attoub got 70 weeks for nothing! But i'm sure i won't be banned for a long time because he's english not french

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Anonymous January 06, 2011 2:42 pm

Attwood got 9 weeks. Now you can argue about that, but that's a strong statement for something i know was unintentional. (The two guys holding him wasn't mind you.)
That's him out of the 6N, which is a massive loss to England.

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Flipje January 06, 2011 6:32 pm

"Having taken into account mitigating factors, including Mr Attwood's guilty plea, clean record, clear remorse and exemplary conduct at the hearing, the Judicial Officer reduced the period of suspension by the maximum amount of 50 per cent and suspended the player for a period of nine weeks."

What a nice gesture from the ERC judge 18 weeks brought back to 9 weeks!!!!! I am happy to see that they are showing great consistency.

So back February the 21st missing 2 games from the 6 nations.....not the entire 6 nations.

Good Lord, I understand the WC is closed but still... I am laughing my b..ls off.

ERC just succeeded to fuel the idea that they are biased in their judgement.

It is a pity but good news for Attwood.

A nice French expression: "2 poids 2 mesures"

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D0m3 January 06, 2011 6:53 pm

What I dont get is that he plead guilty. So, if he really was, this deserves a really long ban. If not, 9 weeks is ok. But if he had plead not guilty, he would probably get a longer ban. Where is the logic?

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Flipje January 06, 2011 7:10 pm

I believed the plead was "guilty for intentional play" , which was confirmed by the judge as intentional too.

I believed this is the starting level for the 18 weeks.

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Flipje January 06, 2011 7:19 pm

Excuse my French ;-)

It was an UNintentional guilt plea from the player and recognized/accepted by the judge

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B January 06, 2011 8:39 pm

As an England supporter I am shocked and dismayed at the 9 weeks...... Personally I thought the incident did not 'look' as bad as I expected however it is what it is and that is studs to the face and the damage caused also?!? Ridiculous!!! I wanted a bigger ban to teach this idiot a lesson! Personally I can see him being a real pain for England over the years to come!

As for those questioning the gumshield, how do we know it wasn't his bottom teeth that were damaged?

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Anonymous January 07, 2011 12:28 am

9 weeks... what a pity... How do you want French fans to still have faith in the ERC ?...

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Q23 January 07, 2011 12:18 pm

Stamp on my head, english boy, and plea guilty with a great smile.
No long ban, no real punishment.

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Colombes January 07, 2011 12:34 pm

9 weeks...
i hesitate between "lol" and the sadness.

lol, because, finally ERC show its unconsistency in the sanctions and really protect the british players.
Ithought ERC and IRB wanted to punish actions which could seriously damage the players health.
it seems that a romanian who may could have lose an eye is not very important. furthermore, the player pleaded "guilty"... no comment


and also very sad, because it will reiforce the injustice and anger feelings about french fans and clubs towards ERC and their judges...

When u see that Attoub take 70 weeks, Dupuy 30 weeks for eye-gouging and Richie Rees who is sanctionned with just 12 weeks for eye-gouging on Hartley..

Sad, yes very sad

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Vin January 07, 2011 4:51 pm

^^^^

Eye gouge is an eye gouge, I get that, but then you consider how each of them, attoub and dupuy were on the same player who was lying down and unable to defend himself.....

Was Rees gouge as bad as dupuy or attoub? In my opinion NO, therefore I would expect a ban to be less.

I'm still irritated to see gouges being carried out as I believed they would have been reduced after the example made on attoub and dupuy...

However is this going to become the new bitch everytime a ban comes up? 'well a Frenchman would receive 70 weeks so this guy should get a big ban' etc etc etc

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Anonymous January 07, 2011 5:31 pm

to vin,

French are complaining, whining and i find that also quite exhausting :)

but i understand their reactions. i wasn't expecting an 1 year ban for attwood, but ban which could prevent this type of incident.
Regarding Quinnell tragedy, it would have been probably intelligent to put a 3 or 4 months ban in order to send a message to few stampers. well, ERC prefered to thank attwood for his "exemplary conduct" lol

concerning eye-gougin, i also thought that IRB wanted to eradicate it from the game with huge bans. but as i didn't see Rees one, it's impossible to compare it with malicous one from dupuy.

what's sure it doesn't give credit to ERC and it awakes the french moaners ;)

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Flipje January 07, 2011 9:41 pm

Anonymous above gave a pretty fair analysis i think.

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Anonymous January 08, 2011 10:14 am

when you are hold by a player who's on the ground, you know where his body can be: just behind you whith the head between the 2 arms ... Atwood's kick is intentional and dangerous especially because he doesn't see what his foot will crush.

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Anonymous January 11, 2011 3:20 pm

9 weeks for that and alan quinlan got 12 in 2009 for some thing far less malicious.... even compare it to o connell who got 4 weeks for doing no damage except for allowing thomas to flap around on the ground like drogba. its ridiculous. that should have been 24 weeks at least. i play rugby and its this simple..... if u hit a player u take responsibility for wat uve dun. u also know if u play the game that in that position if you do the motion that attwood has done in his stamp ure aiming in the vicinity of the head. its not an accident after that and uv gotta accept ure punishment... attoub deserves every day of his 70 weeks by the way. gouging is despicable. gutter rugby and should be stamped out immediately wit bans like dat.

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